Now for this week I've decided to rate the upcoming games on a beer scale. Basically, the better the game, the better the corresponding beer. For instance, this weekend's Browns/Bengals match up will receive something along the lines of Schlitz. I will also try to select beers that are brewed geographically close to the location of one of the teams.
Now before I begin with my picks, I have a message for all of you Pats' fans who think it's time to quit and start thinking about next season.
Now, 10-6 last week was not bad. However, I would like to point out to the nay sayers that you can still get to 10-6 even with a 25 point blowout loss at the hands of the Dolphins. If I can do it, so can the Pats. On to the picks....
Cleveland at Cincinnati
This game features two teams who are a combined 0-6 and averaging a combined 11 points per game. The Bengals nearly stole one in New York last week while Cleveland's offense has been so impressive that Brady Quinn may soon be under center for the Browns. To be honest, neither team can do much on either side of the ball, and not even a Bud Light Cheleda will do much for taste that will remain in your mouth days after watching these two inept teams.
Gotta take someone.......Bengals 24-7.
Minnesota at Tennessee
The Titans are 3-0 while the offense looked good with Kerry Collins under center last week against the Texans.....you almost have to feel bad for a team when Kerry Collins is far and away the most mentally stable QB on the roster. The Vikings also had a change at the quarterback position with Gus Ferotte taking over for the unproductive Tarvaris Jackson. Jesus, two playoff hopefuls resting the fate of their respective seasons on Kerry Collins and Gus Ferotte.....oh where have you gone Steve McNair and Randall Cunningham. This will be an entertaining contest, so pour a glass of Rogue Chocolate Stout in honor of the defenses and the running games.
Tennessee with a lot of Bironas.......24-10.
Denver at Kansas City
Jay Cutler has never thrown for 400 yards...that is one of the things you no longer able to say, and be correct, come next Monday. The Chiefs are just terrible, scoring just 10 points a game while giving up 26. Meanwhile Denver, with a little help from Referee you know who, is posting nearly 40 points a game and stands at 3-0. This one will be over before kick off....unless Bernard Pollard uses his magic helmet and renders the Broncos' offense useless. I'd recommend a Coors Light, because it's as watered down as the talent in KC, you could pound about 20 of them and still score against the Chiefs and as a Pats fan the mere sight of Bernard Pollard makes you want to put a silver bullet through your head.
Cutler to have a HUGE day.......Broncos 41-10
San Francisco at New Orleans
Both teams can put up some points, both teams can give up some points. The Niners' two wins came against teams that are a combined 1-5 while the 1-2 Saints have played tight games against 3 quality opponents (WAS, DEN, TB). J.T. O'Sullivan (possibly of Irish decent) could have a field day against a Saints secondary that has helped the Saints to a 29th ranking in the league in pass defense. On the other sideline Drew Brees makes most corners he faces look like Ellis Hobbs. So pour yourself a glass of California's very own Stone Ruination IPA--which stands for Infinite Points Accumulated in this game--and get ready to watch defenses to look confused for 60 minutes.
Saints in a defensive struggle.....38-27.
Arizona at NYJNJ
The Jets have looked bad through week 3, and their porous defense will once again be exposed. Kurt Warner and company should have no problem duplicating what the Chargers did to the NYJNJ secondary on Monday night...not to mention a run defense that held up like a wet paper bag when the pillsbury dough boy was on the sidelines. However, Arizona's defense has yet to be tested against a great offense and could get a test against an offense that showed signs of life...assuming that Grandpa Favre is able to go following an ankle injury he sustained in San Diego. So grab yourself a Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and watch those Jet fans' faces turn just as pale while their season goes right into the crapper.
Green Bay at Tampa Bay
Doubtful that Chad Clifton and Warren Sapp will be the honorary captains for this game. The Pack are coming off of a tough loss to the Cowboys while the Bucs are looking to create seperation from the rest of the division. Look for the Bucs' defense to try to seperate limb from body on Sunday and go after Rodgers. Meanwhile, the Packers are losing Al Harris just in time as the Bucs played it conservative last week and threw the ball just 67 times--yes, Brian Griese is still their quarterback. For this one, I would pour me a tall glass of New Glarus' Fat Squirrel, sit back, and watch Rodgers run for dear life.
Atlanta at Carolina
At 2-1 hopes have risen from the ashes in Atlanta.....but those hopes come crashing back down to earth once people realize that the Falcons have beaten the lowly Lions and lowlier Chiefs, not to mention that 11 out of their final 13 games are against playoff quality teams. The Panthers on the other hand are 2-1 after playing the Chargers, Bears and Vikings. With Steve Smith back from a 2 game suspension for getting into a fight with teammate Ken Lucas, obviously Smith doesn't have Scott Boras as his agent who would have gotten Lucas kicked off the team, the Panthers should use this week's game as a means to get the offense on track. For this one a Natty Ice might would be in order, as the Falcons' season is going on ice starting Week 4.
Houston at Jacksonville
The Jags finally got their running game going last week...of course it was against a Colts' defense that is trying to dethrone the Jets as softest defense in the league. However, also entering that discussion are the Houston Texans, who are surrendering 170 yards per game through two weeks. With Maurice Jones-Drew and Fred Taylor, Mario Williams will have limited chances to get to David Gerrard...but hey, at least the Texans secondary won't get exposed. To celebrate the Texans going 0-3, and Taylor and Jones running all over the Texans defense, grab yourself a Lone Star.......the only thing that could be as bad as watching Houston try and play defense.
San Diego at Oakland
This may get out of hand. The Chargers have been moving the ball up and down the field at will....with a dinged up LT. Meanwhile, the Raiders are still a side show and Lane Kiffin watch continues, but they have some play makers and could continue the theme of exposing a Shawne Merroid-less defense. However, when the Bolts go up by 17 the Raiders will have no choice but to abandon the run and turn to a passing game that is Cornhuskeresque. Though San Diego should have no problems, I'll raise a Dogfish Head 60 to a game that will feature offense, offense, and absolutely no defense....and who knows, maybe an official will have gone to the Hochulli school of officiating.
Buffalo at St. Louis
Buffalo looks poised to take the AFC East, while the Rams look poised to.....I have no idea what they poised for. Scott Linehan, in an attempt to save his job, cut starting cornerback Fakhir Brown, and then decided to bench Marc Bulger (a move that has made Linehan about as popular as Matt Millen), who has been taking a beating behind an offensive line that resembles a MASH unit, in favor of Trent Green, a guy whose return to football has drawn pleas from many to retire because of the number of concussions he has sustained. Regardless, no way a team that has been outscored by 87 this season ends the Bills' win streak. So I'll por a glass of Budweiser's new Beer, American Ale, because Budweiser trying to make a flavorful beer is about as ingenious as starting Trent Green.
Bills' special teams outscores the Rams' offense...........31-13.
Washington at Dallas
With all 4 NFC East teams looking like a playoff contender, this is the biggest match up of the week. The Cowboys enter the game 3-0 while the Skins sit at 2-1. Tony Romo and company have shown they can move the ball on anyone while Jason Campbell is starting to pick up the offense brought in by Jim Zorn. While offense will certainly be what is talked about leading up to the game, the defenses will be the difference makers. Washington held both the Saints and Cardinals relatively in check, while the Boys played very well against a Green Bay team that employs an offense similar to that of Washington.
Most are picking the Boys, but I like the Skins' defense to keep Romo in check and for Campbell to move the ball..........pour me an HSA for this week 4 matchup, and I'll drink to Jerry Jones avoiding all cameras and microphones after Washington pulls the upset, 24-20.
Philadelphia at Chicago
Brian Westbrook's status is still up in the air. Without him, McNabb will have to look for rookie DeSean Jackson for some big plays...and hope the rookie runs into the end zone with the ball. After an impressive week 1 win in Indy, Chicago has dropped the past two games by a total of 6 points to a pair of quality opponents. Chicago's defense has shown shades of its former self, while the Eagles, assuming Westbrook is out, are just 3-6 since 2004 with their do everything running back on the sidelines. McNabb's struggles will limit what Kyle Orton has to do....which will consist of handing the ball of to Forte most of the day.
Grab yourself a Yingling for what will be a classic......Bears, 20-13.
Baltimore at Pittsburgh
The Steelers are without Willie Parker and in his place will be rookie Rashard Mendenhall....who gave the Ravens some bulletin board material and couldn't hold onto the ball in pre-season. The status of Willis McGahee is questionable, but the health of Ben Roethlisberger will be question all night as the Ravens will have no problem getting to him as #7 has been sacked 12 times so far this season.
I'll take a bottle of Miller High Life, because calling it the Champagne of Beers and thinking that makes it good is kind of like thinking this game will be good because it's on Monday night......Ravens 15-7.